PowerBook (Bronze keyboard): How to Operate with Clamshell Closed

This article tells how the PowerBook G3 Series (Bronze keyboard) can be used with the display clamshell closed and an external monitor attached.
This article has been archived and is no longer updated by Apple.
If you have an external keyboard that has a power button follow the instructions below. (These instructions will not work with the Apple Pro Keyboard.)
    1. Place your PowerBook in sleep mode by closing the display.

    2. Connect your power adapter and external display.

    3. Connect the Apple external USB keyboard and mouse, and then press the Power button on the keyboard to wake the PowerBook.

To activate the internal display again, put the PowerBook to sleep and wake it with the display open.


    1. If you are using your PowerBook with the clamshell closed, you cannot utilize Video Mirroring. If you have both a VGA and S-Video source connected to the PowerBook, it shows an image only on the VGA device.

    2. Connecting an external display increases the power requirements of the PowerBook. Therefore you should use the AC adapter whenever you are connected to an external display.

    3. To wake the PowerBook from sleep from an external keyboard (such as when you are running with the clamshell closed), you must press the power key on the external keyboard. Other keys on the external keyboard do not respond when the PowerBook is truly asleep. In contrast, if the PowerBook has simply spun down the hard disk and dimmed the display (but is not completely asleep), then the PowerBook wakes from any key pressed on the external keyboard.

    4. External keyboards without a power button, such as the Apple Pro Keyboard, will not wake in closed clamshell mode.

Published Date: Feb 20, 2012